Review: The Gel Cumulus is a highly popular, well cushioned daily running shoe. It’s well suited to neutral runners with a tendency towards underpronation and has a nice balance of flexibility, soft cushioning and lightweight responsiveness.
The single-piece engineered mesh upper is designed with 3D printed overlays to provide a little stability while the upper as a whole creates a snug, but breathable fit.
Flytefoam Propel technology.
3D print upper.
High abrasion rubber outsole.
Good option for underpronators.
Lightweight and well-cushioned.
Fit runs slightly small.
This is a top rated daily trainer that is nicely cushioned and comfortable. A reliable choice for neutral runners and easily some of the best Asics women’s running shoes.
Review: A go-to-shoe for many overpronators, the Kayano is a very comfortable stability shoe with excellent shock absorption.
Flytefoam Propel and Flytefoam Lyte cushioning provide a soft, bouncy feel, while plenty of gel in the heel and forefoot absorb impact.
They don’t always have the cushiest feel, but sometimes firmer cushioning does a better job of absorbing impact without sacrificing responsiveness. And, the arch support on these shoes is second to none.
Excellent long distance shoe.
Guidance Trusstic System provides plenty of torsional stability.
Review: The Nimbus Lite is a lighter and faster version of the Nimbus 22 above. It’s a great neutral shoe that is probably going to be more popular than the Nimbus 22 once it becomes more widely known.
Plush cushioning, good responsiveness and plenty of flexibility in a lightweight package make it super comfortable and easy to run in and leave you wondering why you’d ever run in something heavier.
Gel cushioning in the rear and forefoot.
Flytefoam midsole is lightweight, soft and responsive.
Made with lots of recycled materials makes it a more sustainable option.
Wide, roomy toe box.
Absence of Trusstic system makes for very slightly less stability.
A clear winner for neutral runners, this shoe ticks all the boxes.
Review: A step down from the GT 2000, the GT 1000 was considered the best of Asics’s stability shoes in the early 2000s, so even though it’s now outperformed by the likes of the GT 2000 and Kayano, it’s still a more than adequate stability shoe that should not be discounted.
Updated engineered mesh upper is lightweight and breathable.
Rearfoot Gel and Flytefoam Propel midsole.
Dynamic Duomax and Guidance Trusstic System for stability.
This is a lightweight and breathable stability shoe, ideal for heel strikers who overpronate.
Review: Designed for triathlon (though admittedly this doesn’t make a whole lot of sense as you’ll only be wearing them for the run component of the triathlon), the Gel Noosa Tri are a lightweight snappy shoe that falls somewhere between a racing flat and a daily running shoe.
The one area they might be useful in a triathlon-specific situation is the seamless upper which allows the shoes to be comfortably worn without socks.
That aside, they make an excellent lightweight and fast feeling stability shoe.
Dynamic Duomax and Impact Guidance System for stability.
Gel cushioning for shock absorption.
Propulsion plate adds serious energy return.
Comfortable seamless upper with ventilation holes.
Colors may be too ‘out there’ for some.
A really popular lightweight and energizing stability shoe.
Review: A popular and extremely comfortable motion control shoe, the Gel Foundation 13 is the shoe for you if your overpronation is out of control or you experience pain from problems such as plantar fasciitis, shin splints or runner’s knee.
They are also great for people with flat feet as their spacious interior allows for wide feet, x-wide sizing is available and there is plenty of room for custom inserts.
Rearfoot and forefoot Gel cushioning.
Guidance Trusstic System and Guidance Line Midsole Technology.
Comfortable seamless upper.
SpevaFoam midsole is responsive and durable.
Compatible with custom inserts.
A top rated, well cushioned motion control shoe for extreme stability.
Review: The Gel Excite is another entry-mid level neutral shoe, but with plush cushioning and plenty of flexibility. It uses Amplifoam midsole foam which falls somewhere between EVA and Flytefoam in performance, making these shoes excellent value for money.
Available in wide sizing.
Gel cushioning technology.
Ortholite sockliner provides extra comfort.
Amplifoam midsole at the price point of EVA foam.
None for its price point.
A comfortable and reliable entry-mid level road shoe for neutral runners.
Review: The Roadhawk FF 2 is a lightweight road shoe that could be a racing flat if you prefer something a little more substantial underfoot for longer distances, or a lightweight snappy road shoe for everyday running if that’s your jam.
They don’t have Gel like many Asics models but instead the midsole relies on just Flytefoam Propel which results in a simple, minimalist feel.
They can be very comfortable once you get used to their slightly unique feel, but they’re really only suited for solid neutral runners with no pronation issues.
Flytefoam Propel midsole.
Supportive heel cup.
Lacks a little structure.
No wide sizing available.
A versatile, lightweight option for neutral road runners.
Review: For a low drop option, the GlideRide is an excellent choice. With a 5mm drop, it’s designed for midfoot or forefoot strikers with high arches. Despite the high stack height, it also provides an exceptionally stable feel with a well-structured upper and wide underfoot platform.
The midsole plate makes the midsole feel a little stiff but provides a whole new level of responsiveness and propulsion that makes for a fast, springy ride with a rockered effect.
Stable for a neutral, low drop shoe.
Soft, plush upper.
Flytefoam and Flytefoam Propel midsole.
May be warm in hot weather.
May have a stiff feel (but needed for the rockered effect).
These shoes have a unique feel that take a bit of getting used to, but once you’re past that point, you won’t want to stop.
Asics the Traditionalists
Asics have many fans in the running world. Their shoes are comfortable, well-structured and well known for top of the line arch support.
The majority of their shoes fit into the traditional style of running shoe with a higher heel to toe drop (9mm and up) that encourages heel striking and consequently requires hefty cushioning in the heel.
They do have some low drop shoes but they’re arguably less well-known than the likes of the Kayano and Cumulus.
So, if you know you’re a die-hard heel striker and you tend towards either end of the over or under pronation spectrum, you are in the right place.
Asics have some of the best shoes on the market when it comes to stability for overpronation. The Gel Foundation 13 is an excellent motion control shoe, while the Kayano continues to lead the pack of stability shoes.
Both are also great choices for people with flat feet but if you’re looking for more flat feet options, we have all the best right here. We also have all the best stability running shoes on this list.
This higher drop, traditional tendency does affect the style and overall look of the shoe. Asics maintains its traditional style even in its lower drop shoes, which contrasts with the space odyssey come elfin style that Nike and Adidas shoes have moved towards in recent years.
But it works. Their shoes are as popular as ever and known for being reliable and good quality.
On the other hand, if you prefer the style of Nike and Adidas and are looking for the lower drop, lighter stability options that they offer, we have lists of their best running shoes to get you started. Go here for Nike and here for Adidas.
Asics, like most running brands, lagged behind Adidas after its release of the groundbreaking Boost foam, and continued to use EVA while it developed its own proprietary midsole tech.
But, it got there. And now, top of the line Asics midsoles mostly consist of Flytefoam and its descendants, together with the Gel that Asics has used consistently for many years.
Flytefoam Propel is known for its responsiveness, Flytefoam Lyte, for its lightweight, and Flytefoam Blast, a combination of both.
Asics is known for fitting narrow and a little small. This is great for people with narrow feet, but admittedly not ideal for people with wide feet.
Wide sizing is available in some models but not all. Be careful to check the width of the shoe before you buy it!
Asics have been making great moves towards gender-specific shoes.
Many companies simply offer unisex shoes in smaller sizes for women. However, the industry is starting to realize that women’s feet and biomechanics are different from their male counterparts.
According to Asics, women have a different forefoot to heel width ratio than men. Women’s feet tend to have a greater difference between these measurements resulting in a narrower heel fit. To counter this, Asics have developed a narrower last, resulting in shoes with a narrower fitting heel.
Women also tend to be lighter than men, meaning that the cushioning used in men’s shoes may not be soft enough to provide good energy return. Asics are consequently developing a female-specific forefoot foam to provide a softer, more springy feel.
Lastly, Asics have found that due to naturally fluctuating hormones throughout the month, the biomechanics of women’s feet actually change. When estrogen levels are high in the middle of the monthly cycle, women’s muscles are naturally more relaxed, resulting in a lower arch and greater stress on the plantar fascia.
In response to this information, Asics is developing a gender-specific Space Trusstic System to provide the right balance of space, support and flexibility throughout the month.
Asics is primarily known for running shoes. However, they have an impressive range of shoes for other sports too, include some great workout and cross-training shoes like the popular Met Conviction. If you’d like more options for great women’s workout shoes, check out our guide here.
As you can see, women are starting to make their mark on the running and running shoe world.
There are so many great options out there for fantastic shoes, and the new technology just keeps on coming!
Thank you for reading this guide to the best Asics running shoes for women of 2021.
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Michael is a fitness expert and professional home/garage gym builder. His tutorials, guides, and reviews are backed up by his own experience and will definitely help you achieve your goals. He also loves putting mayo AND ketchup on the pizza for some reason!